I have been keeping tabs on Jeff Sagarin's weekly NCAA college football rankings through the first three weeks of the season, to get a better sense of how the Eagles stack up to one of the few computer rankings used in the BCS standings. Using a combination of the Elo Chess and the Pure Points ratings, you can simulate the Eagles' remaining 10 games.
This week, Sagarin's computer rankings have the Eagles finishing the season 8-4 (4-4 ACC), with losses to Virginia Tech, N.C. State, Florida State and -- surprisingly -- Virginia. This is up one win from the first two weeks of the season. After weeks 1 and 2, Sagarin's rankings had the Eagles at 7-5.
Here's how Sagarin's computer rankings predict the Eagles will finish the season:
|78.73||at N.C. State||Loss|
|83.56||at Florida State||Loss|
|71.07||at Wake Forest||Win|
Can't complain too much about this prediction, though I think as N.C. State starts to drop games, you might see that result flip back to a win. Same with the Cavaliers. At the very least, the Eagles should close the gap with the Wolfpack by putting in better performances than their weeks 1 and 2 performances against Weber State and Kent State.
I think what's more surprising is how well Florida State looks to computers through the first three weeks. FSU is currently the highest ranked ACC team with a rating of 83.56 (good for 17th), followed by Virginia at 26. In fact, Sagarin predicts the Seminoles will get through the ACC portion of their schedule with an unblemished 8-0 record.
Through three weeks, here is the 2010 ACC Atlantic and Coastal Division race as predicted by the Sagarin ratings.
|Florida State||8||0||10||2||Georgia Tech||7||1||9||3|
|N.C. State||6||2||9||3||Virginia Tech||6||2||8||4|
|Wake Forest||2||6||5||7||North Carolina||2||6||4||8|
Well, I take that back. After looking at this, I can't decide what's more surprising. The fact that Sagarin loves the Seminoles and has them coasting to a perfect ACC regular season regular (something that hasn't been accomplished since the ACC expanded to 12 teams) or the complete and utter meltdown that the predictor has for Clemson at 3-9 (1-7 ACC). Clearly, the Tigers haven't impressed these computer rankings to date. Combine that with a brutal schedule and after week 3, you wind up with a 3-9 record.
Luckily for the Tigers, and for BC, games aren't played on paper.